Parent Information (Newborn to 9 months)

Healthy Child Visits by Age

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We encourage all parents to schedule healthy child appointments.

Vaccines

View our Immunization schedule.

If your child seems fussy or uncomfortable, we recommend giving a dose of Tylenol. This can be repeated once every 4 hours as needed.

2-3 week well-baby visit

We will be concentrating on your how your infant is growing as well as any concerns or questions you may have. In addition to a complete physical exam, we will measure and plot your baby’s head circumference, height and weight on a standardized growth chart. This shows us how she is developing and allows us to compare her growth at subsequent visits. In our office, immunizations do not begin until your baby’s next visit around 2 months of age.

Often parents wonder what newborns can sense. Generally, infants have a good sense of smell, especially when it comes to breast milk. They can hear their parents’ voices and see about 7 to 8 inches away. It’s during this time that new babies learn to anticipate and trust their environment through consistent sleep and feeding patterns.

More helpful, age-appropriate information:

Feel free to download our newborn booklet. It serves as a good resource, addressing our practice’s approach to many common questions related to infants.

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2-month well-baby visit

At this visit, we continue to focus on your infant’s growth and development. In addition to a complete physical exam, we will measure and plot your child’s length, weight and head circumference on a standard growth chart. This allows us to compare where he is now with his previous measurements.

By now, your infant should smile in response to social cues. Most parents note they can distinguish their infant’s needs based on the different types of cries the baby produces. Cooing now gives him an additional method of communication. We encourage tummy time during awake periods to allow him to strengthen his head control and practice pushing up in a prone position.

This is the first visit where your infant will receive immunizations. Below is a link to the immunization schedule we follow in our office.

More helpful, age-appropriate information: 

We encourage all parents to schedule health baby appointments.

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4-month well-baby visit

This is an exciting time for your baby as changes are occurring rapidly. As at previous visits, we will perform a complete physical exam and plot your child’s weight, length and head circumference to compare to her previous measurements.

Developmentally, your baby should be starting to roll from her front to back. She should smile spontaneously and be able to soothe herself for short periods. Babbling continues to increase and should be encouraged as a precursor to language development. Head control is much improved and she will now reach for objects.

Your infant will receive her second set of immunizations at this visit. You may consider starting solid foods at this point. If you have a strong family history of asthma or allergies we recommend waiting til 6 months of age.

More helpful, age-appropriate information:

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We encourage all parents to schedule health baby appointments.

6-month well-baby visit

During this visit to the office, we’ll again perform a complete physical exam and plot your baby’s growth on a standardized growth chart. We’ll also review his development to be sure he is meeting the expected milestones for his age.

By 6 months of age, most infants are sitting propped, babbling in response to their parents, and rolling in both directions. Razzing noises and single-consonant vocalization become the focus of their language development at this point. Some infants will begin to pull their knees up under themselves in preparation to crawl. Most enjoy bouncing in the standing position. Your baby can now hold toys, likes to shake or mouth them, and will transfer objects from hand to hand. You may also notice he is now beginning to recognize his own name.

Your infant will receive his third set of immunizations at this visit. If you have not already begun to introduce solid foods, it is important you do so to avoid later problems with oral aversion. This can develop if infants are not introduced to solid foods in a timely fashion and subsequently do not tolerate the feeling of different textures in their mouth. Because your infant is becoming more mobile, baby-proofing your home is an important task. If your child’s teeth have erupted, we recommend you brush them with a soft bristle brush. You may use just water when brushing. If you choose to use toothpaste, select one that does not contain fluoride until your child is able to spit on command.

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9-month well-baby visit

We encourage all parents to schedule health baby appointments.

As your baby becomes more mobile, you will notice that he becomes more expressive about his needs and wants. It’s now that he will begin understanding the concept of “no.” He will also develop a sense of object permanence, meaning he will remember people and things exist even if they are not visible at the moment. Stranger anxiety, or a fear of unfamiliar faces, is also a normal development at this age. These changes pave the way for common behavioral adjustments. For example, you may notice your child demonstrating more dismay when you leave a room. Another common problem is nighttime awakenings where he may cry out for you. Keeping consistent routines, especially when it comes to sleep will help him relax. If your baby wakes during the night, try to avoid feeding him as this will reinforce the behavior. Sometimes a quick check to help him settle will allow him to put himself back to sleep again.

It is important for parents to begin to set limits, particularly as children are more independent. Children are not able to remember rules at this age, but they can respond to distraction as well as a firm “no” for the more serious and dangerous behaviors. Consistency between caregivers is best.

With his increase in mobility, keeping your child safe requires more effort at this age. We do not recommend walkers. Your home will require some childproofing: paying careful attention to stoves, heaters, windows, bathtubs, medicines, cleaners and guns. Be sure to post the Poison Control Center number (1-800-222-1222) near your telephone. He should continue to be in a rear-facing car seat, usually a convertible car seat rather than the infant carrier. There should only be a finger’s width of space between his collarbone and the harness strap.

After your child cuts a tooth, you can begin brushing with a soft toothbrush 2-3 times a day. Avoid toothpaste with fluoride until your child can spit on command. Do not put your baby to bed with a bottle, as this may cause dental caries.

Most children will begin transitioning to self-feeding and table food at this time. A mealtime routine (generally the same eating schedule as the family) is helpful, with 2-3 snacks a day. Now is an excellent time to introduce cup drinking. Breast milk or formula is preferable over cow’s milk until a year of age. Cheese and yogurt are tolerated well by most children this age. When introducing new foods, don’t be discouraged if your baby shows reluctance or refusal. Remember that it can require 10-15 introductions before a baby will accept a new food. Keep juice to 4 ounces per day or avoid it all together. We recommend avoiding nuts (including peanut butter), honey and shellfish at this age.

More helpful, age-appropriate information:

Additional resources:

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